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Phillies Lose Game And Domonic Brown

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CLEARWATER, Fla. (AP) — Roy Halladay breezed through three scoreless innings, then got the official word: He’ll start on opening day for the Philadelphia Phillies.

Whether rookie outfielder Domonic Brown will be with the Phillies then is uncertain.

Brown broke his right hand during a 4-3 loss to the Pittsburgh Pirates on Saturday, an injury that may require surgery and could open a spot in the Phillies’ outfield.

“If he has to have some type of surgery on it, it would be anywhere from three to six weeks of recovery time,” general manager Ruben Amaro Jr. said.

Brown, the team’s top prospect, began the day 0 for 15 this spring. He hurt himself when he swung at the first pitch of his first at-bat, stayed in the game and singled through the middle. He later came out.

Amaro said an X-ray showed the fracture. Brown will be re-evaluated Monday or Tuesday.

Brown has been playing right field. Ben Francisco, who could be in line for that spot if Brown is out for a while, hit his second home run in six games.

Francisco, who came to Philadelphia in the July 2009 trade that brought Cliff Lee to the Phillies the first time, has been a reserve player since leaving Cleveland. He came into camp hoping to win the job created by All-Star Jayson Werth’s departure as a free agent.

Francisco also doubled and scored twice against the Pirates. He is hitting .421 (8 for 19) with six RBIs in seven games.

“He’s done pretty good — real good,” Philadelphia manager Charlie Manuel said. “I think he feels like he’s got to win a job.”

The Pirates did all of their scoring after Halladay exited the game. The reigning NL Cy Young Award winner held Pittsburgh to one hit and struck out four in his second start of the spring.

“I felt a lot better than last time, not just throwing strikes but throwing good strikes,” Halladay said.

After the game, pitching coach Rich Dubee said Halladay would start the opener April 1 against Houston. He’ll be followed by Cliff Lee, Roy Oswalt, Cole Hamels and Joe Blanton.

Relievers Brad Lidge and Jose Contreras each threw a scoreless inning for the Phillies.

Lyle Overbay had three hits for the Pirates, including a double, and scored twice. Neil Walker homered.

Pittsburgh starter Paul Maholm gave up one run in three innings.

NOTES: Philadelphia 2B Chase Utley took batting practice a day after having a cortisone shot on his ailing right knee. He was diagnosed with tendinitis last week and hasn’t played in any of the Phillies’ exhibition games this spring. … Lee will make his second start of the spring on Sunday against the Tampa Bay Rays in Clearwater on Sunday. On the other half of a split squad, Kyle Kendrick will start for the Phillies in Lakeland against the Detroit Tigers. … Pittsburgh RHP James McDonald is scheduled to start against Toronto on Sunday.

(Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)